At the  Kingston Area Estates meeting in November, Ben Wighton at St Nicholas church in Tooting shared about the unforgettable Pumpkin Party they hosted on the  29th October, to provide a fun alternative to Halloween for church families and their friends. The event quickly grew to also include many non-church families from the local area, which garnered so many sign-ups they had to limit the attendee capacity at ‘170’.

Ben went on to explain that the ‘event features included pumpkin painting, crazy golf, a candyfloss machine, a chocolate fountain, face painting, Nerf gun target practice and biscuit decorating; all with a pumpkin theme’.  The event was planned by their event manager, Tabby Fitzgerald, who structured the festivities ‘like a fair’, with ‘different activity stations around the church building that families could participate in at their own pace and choosing’. To encourage visitors to move around the church they created a treasure hunt, with clues stuck to hidden pumpkins and a certificate for successful completion.  Rector Tim Dennis announced the winner of the pumpkin painting competition at the end.

Invitations to their Sunday services and children’s groups were offered to visitors and a gospel flyer from Nay Dawson was included in the party bags.

Key to the promotion of the event was advertising on social media, printing leaflets and putting up posters in the local area. We also asked church family members to be actively involved in inviting friends to the event.

Overall, the team at St. Nicholas Church Tooting reported that the pumpkin party was a great success, and they plan to build on this with future seasonal events throughout the year.